From The Party To The Race | CrankChaos FOX Enduro Race Recap

Day two of the CrankChaos MTB Festival had a large field of riders line up for the five-stage FOX Enduro.

The FOX Enduro at CrankChaos is a big day on the bike with a total time (for the majority of the field) at around 4 hours. The time in stage (time against the clock) for the winner was over 16 minutes. With CrankChaos having an appealing ‘party-to-race ratio’ the vibe amongst the riders is always very relaxed. Yet, racers are racers and once tagged into stage everyone was flat out. The big challenges for the day would be the powder-like soil, managing high-intensity efforts at altitude and dealing with the after-effects of the previous night at the Sky bar.

Riders in action at the 2019 fox enduro at the Crankchaos maluti mountain bike festival in lesotho. Image for crankchaos by dom barnardt. Bike Network.
Needles got stuck-in early on stage one making light work of the first technical section and tieing with Theo for the lead.
Riders in action at the 2019 fox enduro at the Crankchaos maluti mountain bike festival in lesotho. Image for crankchaos by dom barnardt. Bike Network.
Pottie had some technical issues in a few of the stages which took him out of the overall but he did snatch a win on stage two. “CrankChaos is one of my highlights of the year. We have so many high-pressure races as athletes so coming to an event like this where you just kuier and have fun with friends – where the results don’t really matter is so cool. This event is just about having a jol with like-minded people. I will be back.” – Pottie
Riders in action at the 2019 fox enduro at the Crankchaos maluti mountain bike festival in lesotho. Image for crankchaos by dom barnardt. Bike Network.
The combination of altitude and soft soil at Afriski ensured the 5-stage enduro was physically challenging and technically tricky. Frankie du Toit rode consistently through all the stages placing 2nd on the day.
“CrankChaos is such an amazing event, it incorporates all the gravity elements of riding and brings everyone to the same place to have a jol on bikes. The racing isn’t so serious but it’s so much fun. The riding here is amazing. It’s very different to anywhere else – the powder on the trails is crazy and rad. This is a for sure on my calendar for next year.” – Frankie
Riders in action at the 2019 fox enduro at the Crankchaos maluti mountain bike festival in lesotho. Image for crankchaos by dom barnardt. Bike Network.
Shred or be shredded.
Riders in action at the 2019 fox enduro at the Crankchaos maluti mountain bike festival in lesotho. Image for crankchaos by dom barnardt. Bike Network.
Tim Bentley leans into the wind as he lines up one of the drops.
Riders in action at the 2019 fox enduro at the Crankchaos maluti mountain bike festival in lesotho. Image for crankchaos by dom barnardt. Bike Network.
A solid 4th overall for Duran Duran but he definitely won best dressed.
Riders in action at the 2019 fox enduro at the Crankchaos maluti mountain bike festival in lesotho. Image for crankchaos by dom barnardt. Bike Network.
After 16 minutes against the clock ‘fun rider’ Theo ended the day in 2nd, just 4 seconds off of the win.
Riders in action at the 2019 fox enduro at the Crankchaos maluti mountain bike festival in lesotho. Image for crankchaos by dom barnardt. Bike Network.
“CrankChaos thinks of everything. They think of the vibe, how is everyone going to have the most fun in a stress-free environment. There has been a lot of work on the trails this year, there are two more stages to the Enduro this year and it’s now world-class. It’s good riding. It’s a good weekend with the boys and a good weekend of riding. 10 out of 10.” – Andrew Neethling
Riders in action at the 2019 fox enduro at the Crankchaos maluti mountain bike festival in lesotho. Image for crankchaos by dom barnardt. Bike Network.
Adriaan Smit from Paarl rallied into 6th overall.
Riders in action at the 2019 fox enduro at the Crankchaos maluti mountain bike festival in lesotho. Image for crankchaos by dom barnardt. Bike Network.
With the T-bar lift used twice during liaisons, the 5 stage enduro is a little less demanding on the legs than it might have been. However, at 3 222m above sea level, it is still a significantly tough day out for all; which in a way extracts more Gees from the riders.
Riders in action at the 2019 fox enduro at the Crankchaos maluti mountain bike festival in lesotho. Image for crankchaos by dom barnardt. Bike Network.
Big mountains. Views for days. Riders boosting all over the show. This is CrankChaos.
Riders in action at the 2019 fox enduro at the Crankchaos maluti mountain bike festival in lesotho. Image for crankchaos by dom barnardt. Bike Network.
All the stages are tricky. Some have a little airtime and some have lots of airtime opportunities.
Riders in action at the 2019 fox enduro at the Crankchaos maluti mountain bike festival in lesotho. Image for crankchaos by dom barnardt. Bike Network.
The liaison to Stage 4 was beastly but assisted with a tail-wind.
Riders in action at the 2019 fox enduro at the Crankchaos maluti mountain bike festival in lesotho. Image for crankchaos by dom barnardt. Bike Network.
Or, be smart like event organizer Max Cluer and use another kind of assist. The electric kind. Braaap.
Riders in action at the 2019 fox enduro at the Crankchaos maluti mountain bike festival in lesotho. Image for crankchaos by dom barnardt. Bike Network.
Enduro virgin Greg Hall says he loved every minute of it especially the camaraderie amongst the riders.
Riders in action at the 2019 fox enduro at the Crankchaos maluti mountain bike festival in lesotho. Image for crankchaos by dom barnardt. Bike Network.
The spirit.
Riders in action at the 2019 fox enduro at the Crankchaos maluti mountain bike festival in lesotho. Image for crankchaos by dom barnardt. Bike Network.
Niko Velasco (Commencal South Africa) cruised into 3rd overall today.
Riders in action at the 2019 fox enduro at the Crankchaos maluti mountain bike festival in lesotho. Image for crankchaos by dom barnardt. Bike Network.
There was a lot of foot out insurance taken throughout the day as the loose turns were unpredictable.
Riders in action at the 2019 fox enduro at the Crankchaos maluti mountain bike festival in lesotho. Image for crankchaos by dom barnardt. Bike Network.
Smash it bro! #Powder
Riders in action at the 2019 fox enduro at the Crankchaos maluti mountain bike festival in lesotho. Image for crankchaos by dom barnardt. Bike Network.
Little shredder! Jack Schlieman (9 years old) completed all 5 stages and placed 7th in the U18 category.
Riders in action at the 2019 fox enduro at the Crankchaos maluti mountain bike festival in lesotho. Image for crankchaos by dom barnardt. Bike Network.
Capetonian and ex motocross racer Dayle Holmes sits into the turn in full moto style. Dayle placed 5th in sub vets and 12th overall.
Riders in action at the 2019 fox enduro at the Crankchaos maluti mountain bike festival in lesotho. Image for crankchaos by dom barnardt. Bike Network.
Going into the last two stages Tim Bentley was 5 seconds down on Theo but he clawed all of them back and put a further 4 seconds into Theo to claim the win. What a beast.
Riders in action at the 2019 fox enduro at the Crankchaos maluti mountain bike festival in lesotho. Image for crankchaos by dom barnardt. Bike Network.
Stage 5 was everyone’s favorite. Over 5 minutes in length, with a flowy start and a steeper technical end section.
Riders in action at the 2019 fox enduro at the Crankchaos maluti mountain bike festival in lesotho. Image for crankchaos by dom barnardt. Bike Network.
3rd overall in the women’s field and 1st U18, Beani Thies (left): “This whole trip has been amazing. It’s really cool to have a bigger field this year. If you want to have fun, to have a year-end bash this is definitely the place to do it.”
Riders in action at the 2019 fox enduro at the Crankchaos maluti mountain bike festival in lesotho. Image for crankchaos by dom barnardt. Bike Network.
Most of the riders keep it classy when there are free beers at the finish line.
Riders in action at the 2019 fox enduro at the Crankchaos maluti mountain bike festival in lesotho. Image for crankchaos by dom barnardt. Bike Network.
….then there is Theo in off-season mode.
Riders in action at the 2019 fox enduro at the Crankchaos maluti mountain bike festival in lesotho. Image for crankchaos by dom barnardt. Bike Network.
FOX had a full range of lids on display which were also available to demo.
Riders in action at the 2019 fox enduro at the Crankchaos maluti mountain bike festival in lesotho. Image for crankchaos by dom barnardt. Bike Network.
Max and Peter driving the gees whilst keeping a watchful eye on #Buffalo opportunities.
Riders in action at the 2019 Crankchaos maluti mountain bike festival in lesotho. Image for crankchaos by dom barnardt.
Jnr podium from left: Klaasen, Luxpord (1st) and Brand.
Riders in action at the 2019 fox enduro at the Crankchaos maluti mountain bike festival in lesotho. Image for crankchaos by dom barnardt. Bike Network.
Women’s podium from left: du Toit, Grossman (1st) and Thies.
Riders in action at the 2019 Crankchaos maluti mountain bike festival in lesotho. Image for crankchaos by dom barnardt.
Men’s podium from left: Erlangsen, Bentley (1st) and Velasco.


About #CrankChaos

The annual CrankChaos MTB Festival is unique and definitely one for the bucket list. Emulating events like Crankworx and the Colorado Freeride Festival, CrankChaos brings you the very best that mountain biking has to offer. The event is hosted by Afriski Mountain Resort in the beautiful Mountain Kingdom of Lesotho, which at 3 222m above sea level makes it the highest festival of its kind on the African continent.


| IMAGES: Dom Barnardt | VIDEO: Ewald Sadie |



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